Centuripe is a stunning and forgotten ancient town on the island of Sicily. It is an ancient settlement tracing its history back to at least the 5th century BC. Centuripe stands in stark contrast to the capital and largest city in Sicily, Palermo. Palermo is the most popular city in Sicily and a place that draws tourists (including many cruise ships) from far and wide.
One of the most intriguing attributes about Centuripe is that when viewed from the air, it looks like a man. But while that is difficult to see from below, there are plenty of old Roman ruins to see and discover in the town. Italy is, without a doubt, one of the best places to find the most impressive ancient Roman ruins.
Roman Ruins Of Centuripe
Roman Centuripe occupied an important route in Sicily. Today, Centuripe may be off the beaten tourist path, but it boasts a rich Roman history. There are still many remains of the Roman city still remaining, as well as some from fine Hellenistic terra-cottas predating the Romans.
Most of the impressive Roman ruins are located in the eastern part of the town (of these, Corradino's Castle - a Roman mausoleum - is one of the most impressive). Look around the 'castle,' and one will find the remains of the Forum.
One of the attractions is the Castle of Conradin - a Roman mausoleum of the Imperial times. Some ancient ruins of the town are:
- Amara Water Zone: The Thermal Remains From The Hellenistic-Roman Age
- Sorgiva Bagni: Roman Bath Remains
- District Bagni: Ancient Greek Necropolis
- District Casino: An Iron-Age Necropolis
- Corradino Castle: An Impressive Roman Mausoleum
- Mulino Barbagallo: A Monumental Complex with Marble Statues of Augustus And Others
Other ancient necropolises includes District Cub in Muglia, District Piano Pozzi, District Biliuzzo, Carcaci hamlet, Vallone Gelso (from the 8th century BC to the Hellenistic period), and Piano Capitano. There are plenty of other Roman ruins, including ancient towns, ancient furnaces, ancient gymnasiums, and ancient cisterns.
One of the most curious ruins is that of a ruined Roman bridge. The bridge had been lost for centuries because the river was diverted. The bridge was likely built in the second century between 108 and 112 AD.
Finally, take time to see the Regional Archeological Museum of Centuripe - home to the largest collection of Roman finds in central Sicily.
Centuripe Looks Like A Man
If one is going to Centuripe, be sure to take a drone (local regulations permitting). The view from above is very striking, with the town laid out in a "starfish" shape. This gives Centuripe the appearance of a man with outstretched arms and legs.
- Population: 5,400
- Location: Enna, Sicily
Centuripe has become something of an Instagram sensation for its truly remarkable shape and appearance.
Centuripe is spread out across the ridges of several hills. One way to see the peculiar shape of the town is to fly a drone high above it (providing it is legal to do so). Another way is to look for a scenic flight or even a chartered flight.
Centuripe also has caves with sulfur and salt minerals, as well as water springs.
Soak In The Sicilian Vibe In Centuripe
One of the main reasons one should visit this spectacular non-tourist town - is specifically because it is spectacular and non-touristic. Here one can see the stunning beauty of ancient Sicilian towns in the interior of the island of Sicily mixed with the ruins of the Roman and Greek times that went before.
Sicily is a place where one of the most important ways to really see and explore is to relax. Just get an Airbnb or other place to, say, go in the center and drink beer or Aperol Spritz on the street and soak in the atmosphere. Order a real Italian pizza or enjoy some Italian pasta and see why so many people fall in love with Sicily.
- Aperol Spritz: Perhaps The Most Popular Italian Summer Drink
Southern Italy may be comparatively chaotic and not always make sense to the visitor, but it is also full of life, character, and charm.
Being set out on ridge lines, the town is already dramatic. It is the perfect blend of attributes to enjoy the southern Italian setting and culture.